Exit Fees

(At the governor’s office)

Nameless Assistant: Good morning Governor Dayton.

Governor Dayton: (mumbles something unintelligible)

Nameless Assistant: Indeed sir. Did you hear the news? You made the Wall Street Journal again today.

 

Governor Dayton: (mumbles something unintelligible)

Nameless Assistant: Oh, really sir? You haven’t seen it yet? Do you want me to read it to you?

Governor Dayton: (mumbles something unintelligible)

Nameless Assistant: Of course sir. Stop me if I’m going too fast or you don’t understand something.

(The Nameless Assistant picks up the paper and begins to read)

The grand prize for self-abuse goes to Minnesota, which this year enacted a new 10% gift tax with a $1 million exemption. A gift tax is a levy on money given away while still alive. This tax is in addition to Minnesota’s 16% estate tax. The new law is all the more punitive because it applies the 16% estate tax (6% on top of the earlier 10% gift tax) to any gift within three years of death.

This is essentially a clawback tax, or more taxation without respiration. Democratic Governor Mark Dayton, who signed the law, is the heir to a department store fortune and knows a lot about inheriting wealth but not much about creating it.

Nameless Assistant: Well, like they say “any pub is good pub,” right Governor Dayton?

Governor Dayton: (mumbles something unintelligible)

Nameless Assistant: You don’t remember that law? (Sigh) Not again.

Governor Dayton: (mumbles something unintelligible)

Nameless Assistant: So noted sir. Next session I’ll be sure to remind you to read the bills before you sign them.

Cross-posted from Fraters Libertas.